Why research topics in health and wellness?
Originally published June 2017; updated with even more awesomeness in August 2018 and again in February 2020.
Eeek! Does the thought of putting time into researching your health and wellness topics make you cringe? I know you probably don’t have time to decipher studies, plus you’d rather speak with your clients.
What if, even if you don’t do the research yourself, you could see the benefits for your business? What if it can help you build your credible brand and nurture more trust with your audience.
Let me ask you:
- Do you want more confidence putting yourself out there knowing that your recommendations are solid?
- Do you want your readers and clients to trust that what you’re saying is backed by more than just an opinion?
- Do you want to differentiate yourself from the rest of the huge $4.2 trilllion and growing wellness industry (many of whom are unqualified)?
If you said “yes,” then read on for some unexpected biz-building benefits of having credible research for your health and wellness topics.
By referencing quality research you will be seen as an expert thought leader and it can even open up doors for networking in the industry!
Let’s start with the ultimate primary numero uno benefit of researching your topics in health and wellness . . .
Reason #1 – It’s best for your clients
As a health and wellness professional, you want to help your clients reach their health goals. You want them to feel better. You want them to get results.
What better way to do that than to make sure you’re up-to-date on the most effective health recommendations for them? What is going to give them the best chance of results but the best information, right? And you find that by searching reliable resources.
Imagine you have a client that is concerned about her bones and heard that she should avoid protein-containing foods. Up until 2004 there was good reason to think that high-protein diets leached calcium from our bones. But at the same time, people who tend to eat more protein tend to have stronger bones. Well, in 2004 new higher-quality studies put that contradiction to rest. As a knowledgeable professional who’s in touch with recent research your advice to eat protein would be great for your client’s bones!
Another reason researching yout topics is best for your clients is that you may find out something new. Maybe new research shows an even better course of action? Or maybe there is a “contraindication” with a supplement you were going to recommend (a reason they should NOT use that supplement).
For example, I did a bit of research and found that grapefruit (and its juice) interacts with dozens of medications(1). If your client is taking one of those meds, you should not recommend grapefruit to them.Knowledge from #health #research can be used to better help your audience and clients reach their health goals. Click To Tweet
Reason #2 – Increase your credibility and influence
What about people who are not your paying clients? What about people who read your blog, watch your videos, listen to your podcast, or go to your talks? Having research behind your statements helps your audience trust you because YOU are the expert. They will see that you stand out from the majority of wellness professionals because YOU bothered to do research and YOUR information is reliable.
It also lets them look further into the topic and check out your research sources for themselves if they want to.
In return for referencing trustworthy information and websites they trust you even more.
When they trust you more, you have more credibility and influence.
I know I’m not the only person who looks at references when I need to know new health information!
(I’m not the only one, I swear!)
BONUS REASON TO RESEARCH HEALTH BLOG POSTS: If you come across a new or unknown remedy or contraindications, sharing that with your audience can set you apart as a thought leader. Staying on top of the news in your niche is a great way to increase your credibility and influence. Have you seen some of the latest research on nutritional psychiatry?How to get more #credibility and #influence for your #health #blog - research! Click To Tweet
Reason #3 – Networking
One of the most unexpected benefits of researching your health and wellness topcis is that it gives you an opportunity to network. You can get on researchers and influencers’ radar by sharing their great work and letting them know about it. When you find and share their research on social media, tag them.
Another way is by linking to them in your blog posts:
Some websites publish “backlinks” or “trackbacks” in the comments section of their blog articles (mine does!).
See here, I’m super-proud of my ProBlogger.com backlink. Here’s what it looks like in the comments section of my blog post about turmeric vs curcumin:
And here is the actual link that Darren gave me on ProBlogger:
TIP: If you don’t have Google Analytics, or at least check your traffic stats regularly, you should. You’re welcome. 🙂
Even if your favourite credible influencer doesn’t notice your backlink, you can use your post to open up a conversation with them. You may want to connect to get on their radar, or even offer to help them or work with them in some way. Hint – don’t reach out to them the wrong way!Use links to show #influencers you respect them. #blog #health #research Click To Tweet
And just in case you’re concerned that you’re sending people away from your site with your outbound links, don’t worry! Simply set your links to open up in a new tab. This way, when a reader closes that tab, your blog post is still front and centre!
Here’s how to do it in WordPress:
Researching doesn’t have to feel tedious or take forever, though! Here’s how to do research efficiently.
And if you want a bit more guidance on how to research health topics online, feel free to check out my course How to do health research online.
Want to lean on research that’s already been done? Check out these highly credible research-based done-for-you health articles for your own blog, products, and programs.
Signing off and toasting: To more awesome (and researched) credible health content for the internet!
Over to you
Do you regularly research your health and wellness topics? If so, did I miss a benefit that you’ve seen? If you don’t research and link to your references, why not? Is there something you could use some help with?
Do you have any questions or concerns about researching health information? Let me know in the comments and I’ll personally reply!
(1) Bailey, D.G., Dresser, G., J. & Arnold, J.M.O. (2013). Grapefruit–medication interactions: Forbidden fruit or avoidable consequences? Canadian Medical Association Journal, 185, 4. doi: 10.1503/cmaj.120951
I'm Leesa Klich, MSc., R.H.N.
Health writer – Blogging expert – Research nerd.
I help health and wellness professionals build their authority with scientific health content. They want to stand out in the crowded, often unqualified, market of entrepreneurs. I help them establish trust with their audiences, add credibility to their services, and save them a ton of time so they don’t have to do the research or writing themselves. To work with me, click here.